May 10 Energy News

May 10, 2016

Opinion:

¶ “Why Used Electric Car Batteries Could Be Crucial To A Clean Energy Future” • Major EV makers are examining the values of used EV batteries when they no longer meet the strict standards for powering cars. This potential second life for EV batteries is a clean energy game changer. [ThinkProgress]

Used Chevy Volt Batteries Help New GM IT Building Use Solar And Wind Power. Via GM

Used Chevy Volt batteries help a new GM IT building
use solar and wind power. Via GM

¶ “Physicist claims Hinkley Point deal means UK taxpayer could get £53 billion bill to supply cheap nuclear energy to France” • Professor Barnham, of Imperial College London, claims the Hinkley Point deal means UK taxpayer could get £53 billion bill to supply cheap power to France. [The Independent]

Science and Technology:

¶ A group of scientists led by the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the University of Colorado-Boulder has developed a new, eco-friendly method to produce ammonia, the main ingredient of fertilizers, using light. Their paper is in Science. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ Other than large hydroelectric plants, all forms of renewable energy in Russia account for less than 1% of power generation capacity. This is according to Russia Direct, which reports that Russian wind, solar and geothermal energy is terrifyingly underdeveloped. [CleanTechnica]

Moscow. Image via Shutterstock.

Moscow. Image via Shutterstock.

¶ E-Force, based in Switzerland, has developed an 18-ton all-electric truck intended to compete to standard diesel-powered delivery vehicles in the region. E-Force says its range is 300 km (187.5 miles) per full charge, and it uses 0.80 to 1.10 kWh/km at highway speeds. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Developing countries’ renewable energy markets are becoming increasingly attractive for investors, and European markets less so, a report Ernst & Young said. The top 10 countries were the United States, China, India, Chile, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, France, Canada and Australia. [Business Today]

¶ The UK’s attractiveness as a destination for investment in renewable energy has reached an all-time low, due to a series of unexpected green policy U-turns and the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the role of renewables in our energy mix, according to the Ernst & Young report. [edie.net]

The EY report warns that the current record levels of financial support could fall badly.

The EY report warns that the current record levels of financial support could fall badly.

¶ According to the calculations by Agora Energiewende, due to the weather conditions on Sunday, May 8, renewable energy generation in Germany reached a new high. At 11 AM local time, renewables covered a record 95 % of the country’s electricity consumption. [pv magazine]

¶ Extremely negative prices were seen on the German wholesale electricity market over the weekend. On the EPEX SPOT exchange, the German Sunday baseload price was minus €12.89/MWh (minus $14.66). For the 14:00-15:00 Berlin-time slot, it was minus €130.09/MWh (minus $147.94). [ICIS]

US:

¶ Carbon dioxide emissions from the US’s energy sector fell in 2015 and now stand at 12% below 2005 levels, a drop mainly driven by the continuing collapse of the coal industry. The 12% cut since 2005 has come during a period in which the US economy has, adjusting for inflation, grown by 15%. [The Guardian]

Steam billows from the coal-fired Merrimack Station in New Hampshire. Photograph: Jim Cole/AP

Steam billows from the coal-fired Merrimack Station in New Hampshire. Photograph: Jim Cole/AP

¶ A report says utility-scale solar surpassed wind for the first time in California. Public records from the California Independent Systems Operations show utility-scale solar energy in 2015 reached 6.7 % of California’s electricity generation, compared to wind’s 5.3%. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Rocky Mountain Power’s commercial customers will soon have a new option to use solar power and commercial customers will be able to reserve solar blocks. Subscriber Solar allows commercial and residential customers to purchase solar power even if they do not have suitable roofs. [St George News]

Rocky Mountain Solar Farm

Rocky Mountain Solar Farm

¶ Anbaric Transmission and National Grid filed with the New York Public Service Commission for a permit for an extension of their Vermont Green Line. The project would connect 400 MW of New York wind generation to Vermont through lines under Lake Champlain. [RTO Insider]

¶ Developers of a $900 million upstate New York [gas-fired] power plant are at the center of a federal probe into allegations of improper lobbying and conflicts of interest. They had sought and received important state approvals to fast-track the plant. Now, progress could soon grind to a halt. [Newsday]

¶ The California Public Utilities Commission is re-evaluating an agreement that left ratepayers on the hook for $3.3 billion of the cost of closing the San Onofre nuclear plant. The issue is that representatives of the plant’s primary owner engaged in secret talks with regulators. [Los Angeles Times]

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